Rome patron saints’ day on 29 June

Rome celebrates its Sts Peter and Paul with fireworks at Piazza del Popolo.

Rome celebrates its patron saints, Peter and Paul, with a public holiday in the capital on Wednesday 29 June. All public offices in Rome will be shut, as will many shops, while supermarkets may close at lunchtime.

There are liturgical celebrations scheduled in many of the city’s churches, in particular the Basilica of St Paul's Outside the Walls, as well as the Pallium Mass at 09.30 in St Peter’s Basilica.

Tickets are required for the papal ceremony which will see Pope Francis bless the pallium, or white woolen stole which is placed around the shoulders of all newly-appointed archbishops. The Mass will include singing by the Anglican choir of New College, Oxford, and the Lutheran Windsbacher Knabenchor from Dresden.

Later that evening the annual Girandola fireworks display lights up the sky at Pincio, over Piazza del Popolo, at 21.30. This marks the first time that the historic spectacle, introduced in 1481, moves from its traditional location at Castel S. Angelo. The idea of Michelangelo, perfected later by Bernini, the 16-minute display has inspired writers and artists such as Dickens, Belli and Piranesi.